The Making of the American Landscape

A comprehensive view of the evolution of the American landscape written by a team of leading scholars. What’s missing is the next chapter: the impact of transitioning to zero carbon. That’s the chapter we’re living now!

chat Posted Apr 12, 2017 by Rezwan | Category : Vision IMBY
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What the book does

Through carefully chosen illustrations, this book shows you how to “read” in today’s landscape the record of the transformation from early colonization to the present. There have been sweeping changes that vary from region to region depending on environmental factors, economic forces, and dominant beliefs and trends. Per Chris Wilson:

Since its publication in 1990, The Making of the American Landscape has remained the best single-volume introduction to the country’s cultural landscape mosaic. The original edition began life as a twelve-part series in the Geographical Magazine in 1979–80 edited by Michael P. Cozen, who subsequently solicited additional essays to round out the eighteen-chapter first edition of this book.

What’s Missing

This book helps you see how we got to the present American landscape, step by step. It is an excellent exercise in seeing your surroundings and appreciating how economic, environmental, industrial and lifestyle decisions impacted the land.

What it needs are a few more chapters to help us navigate to the future landscape we desire.

Now more than ever, we need to be able to “read ahead” to see what landscape our zero carbon choices will result in. Many people have only a vague idea of the land use impacts of their favorite zero carbon solutions. We need a book that spells it out clearly, all the options, extrapolated and scaled up to the zero carbon world we are headed for.

Perhaps a few chapters are not enough. This is a whole book: Making the American Landscape: Zero Carbon Edition.  must take a look at the landscape choices we now face as we contemplate the best way to get to a net zero carbon economy. Start with energy infrastructure. What would an America that adopts a 100% Renewable Energy solution look like? What about 100% Nuclear? What if large portions of the population adopt a minimalist lifestyle, or a car free lifestyle as described in “Happy City”?

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